There are currently no Black History events available but feel free to look at some examples from last year.

We will be updating the page so keep checking back for more events. Stay Safe, Stay IRIE.

What Was on around hackney

Black History Season in Hackney – October 2021 

Events for Adults:

Book launch: ‘Our Time is Now’ by Selma James 
Dalston CLR James Library, Thursday 30 September, 6-8pm 

Hackney Libraries hosts a book launch to celebrate Ms James’ anthology, Our Time Is Now: Sex, Race, Class, & Caring for People and Planet. 

The event is free but spaces are limited so please book via Eventbrite

The event will also be live streamed – follow Hackney Libraries on Facebook

Ancestry talks with Paul Crooks 

A published author and genealogist, Paul Crooks came to prominence when he became the first genealogist to trace his family history back 6 generations, from London to his ancestors captured off the West African coast 200 years ago. 

His books, Ancestors and A Tree Without Roots – The Guide To Tracing British, African And Asian Caribbean Ancestry brought him international recognition for his breakthrough research into Black ancestry. 

Black History for beginners 
Shoreditch Library, 28 September, 6.30-7.30pm 

Discover how Black ancestry and Black history can be harnessed as powerful tools for personal development, self-empowerment and increasing self-esteem. 


  • Africa: Before the rise of Capitalism (10-15 mins) 
  • Africans in Caribbean: From Enslavement to Emancipation (10-15 mins) 
  • Black & British: The Windrush Generation (5 mins) 
  • Reclaiming and drawing inspiration from the past (5 mins) 
  • Q&A (20 mins) 

Tracing Black History – Who Do You Think You Are? 
Dalston Library, 5 October, 6.30-7.30pm 

In this masterclass, Paul captivates audiences with his unique account of how he traced his roots and his family’s migration down through the generations to Windrush. 

Empowering Black History: The Perfect Storm that Ended Slavery 
Shoreditch Library, 12 October, 6.30-7.30pm 

Paul Crooks was intrigued to learn his great great great grandfather walked free from the Cousins Cove sugar plantation, Jamaica in 1838. This prompted his curiosity about what lay behind the decision to free the enslaved people of the Caribbean. 

The talk is suitable for you if: 

  • You want to develop your knowledge and understanding of Black history.
  • You’re new to exploring family history.
  • You have experience of searching for your ancestors but want to know about other sources.
  • You’ve have started, but your hit difficulties moving forward with you search. 


Storytime and craft – Colourful African necklaces 
Shoreditch Library 9 October, 2-3pm 

Listen to our traditional African stories and create an African-style necklace made out of paper. All ages. 

Fruit Fiesta odun storytelling and singing 
Stoke Newington Library, 12 October, 11am-12 noon 

Come and join us for our special under 5s session. 

Lola will be reading Handa’s Surprise by Eileen Browne and singing a beautiful fruity song from Western Nigeria called Under the Orange Tree. 

CHARRED anniversary tour – Poetry readings and Q&A 
Stoke Newington Library, Tuesday 19 October, 6.30-7,30pm 

With Andreena Leeanne, poet and author of CHARRED: a collection of poems about her personal experiences with homelessness, mental health, childhood sexual abuse and the many other challenges she has faced in her life. Signed copies of CHARRED will be available to purchase at the event. 

Mancala craft and game session 
Clapton Library, 26 October, 2-3pm 

Learn how to play mancala, one of the oldest games in the world, and make your own game to take home. 

Storytime and family craft (6+ and family) 
Homerton Library, 26 October, 2.30-4pm 

Join us to create a freedom quilt and listen to the story of Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt. 

Handa’s Surprise storytelling and craft (7 and under) 
Dalston CLR James Library, 27 October, 2-3.30pm 

Join us for a special story time, and make Handa’s fruit basket from paper and card. 

Drop in session. 

Storytime and family craft 
Homerton Library, 28 October, 2.30-4pm 

Wangari’s Trees of Peace: a true story from Africa. Hear the story of Wangari and create your very own tree. 

African textile arts workshop (age 5+) 
Stoke Newington Library, 28 October, 2-3.30pm 

Explore and experiment, making accessories using African wax print textiles and recycled objects, using weaving and wrapping techniques. Make badges, rosettes, bangles and more. 

Kente cloth paper weaving 
Shoreditch Library 28 October, 2-3pm 

Weave together patterned paper to make a traditional Ghanese kente cloth. Ages 6+. 

African mask making 
Stamford Hill Library, 29 October, 2-3pm 

Create and decorate your own African mask. 

7th National Poetry Day with the Lockdown poetry group 
Online, 7, 14, 21 and 28 October, 6.30-7.30pm 

This October please join our Lockdown poetry group as they explore the work of African and African-British writers. 

We will be reading the poetry of established names such as Wole Soyinka, Lemn Sissay and Patience Agbabi, and also discovering newer voices like Kayo Chingonyi, Vanessa Kisuule and Warsan Shire. All this alongside work by many others you may have already heard of and many more you are sure to be reading in the future. 

Sessions will be held throughout the month of October, please request more details or sign up for the free online sessions by emailing

Black-Owned Makers Market- Poplar Union
Sun, 31 Oct, 11:00-15:00 – Free entry

Here you will find a variety of black-owned and run start-ups and businesses from clothing and accessories to the finest health and beauty products. As local entrepreneur, Chantelle Small said: Black is success, so come and treat yourself to some weekend retail therapy and contribute to the success of these brilliant, local businesses. Click on here on the link for more information.

Pilots of the Caribbean: Heroes and Sheroes

RAF Online exhibition

Read the story of the African-Caribbean personnel, commemorating and celebrating their vital contribution during the war. Click on the link to view the exhibition.